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Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Vol. VI:
The Harmony of the Gospels.: Chapter IX

Early Church Fathers  Index     

Chapter IX.—Of the Question How It Can Be Shown that the Narrative of the Haul of Fishes Which Luke Has Given Us is Not to Be Identified with the Record of an Apparently Similar Incident Which John Has Reported Subsequently to the Lord’s Resurrection; And of the Fact that from This Point on to the Lord’s Supper, from Which Event Onwards to the End the Combined Accounts of All the Evangelists Have Been Examined, No Difficulty Calling for Special Consideration Emerges in the Gospel of Luke Any More Than in that of Mark.

10. Luke, then, commences his Gospel in the following fashion: “There was in the days of Herod the king of Judæa, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth;”and so on, down to the passage where it is said, “Now when He had left speaking, He said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught.” 1624 In this whole section, there is nothing to stir any question as to discrepancies. It is true that John appears to relate something resembling the last passage. But what he gives is really something widely different. I refer to what took place by the sea of Tiberias after the Lord’s resurrection. 1625 In that instance, not only is the particular time extremely different, but the circumstances themselves are of quite another character. For there the nets were cast on the right side, and a hundred and fifty and three fishes were caught. It is added, too, that they were great fishes. And the evangelist, therefore, has felt it necessary to state, that “for all there were so many, yet was not the net broken,” surely just because he had in view the previous case, which is recorded by Luke, and in connection with which the nets were broken 1626 by reason of the multitude of fishes. As for the rest, Luke has not recounted things like those which John has narrated, except in relation to the Lord’s passion and resurrection. And this whole section, which comes in between the Lord’s Supper and the conclusion, has already been handled by us in a manner which has yielded, as the result of a comparison of the testimonies of all the evangelists conjointly, the demonstration of an entire absence of discrepancies between them.



Luke 1:5-5:4.


John xxi. 1-11.


[Rumpebantur, “were breaking,” as in the Greek; comp. Revised Version.—R.]

Next: Chapter X

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